Heat ready to start Canada West league games

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ubc heat

Cary Mellon

KELOWNA, B.C. – The women’s basketball team will start their Canada West experience on the road this upcoming weekend as they play the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns on Friday night at 5 p.m. PST in Lethbridge, then on Saturday the Heat will play the University of Calgary Dinos at 5 p.m. PST in Calgary. The Pronghorns started the season on the road and lost both games to the Winnipeg Wesman while the Dinos had no trouble in Brandon, blowing out the Bobcats on both nights.

GAME TIMES

Friday, November 11 – UBC Okanagan Heat at the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns (5 p.m. PST in the 1st Choice Savings Centre Gym, Lethbridge, AB)

Saturday, November 12 – UBC Okanagan Heat at the University of Calgary Dinos (5 p.m. PST in the Jack Simpson Gym, Calgary, AB)

Both games will be streamed with live video: www.canadawest.tv

HEAT (0-0)

CIS National Ranking: N/A

CanWest Standings: N/A

Last Week: N/A

Streak: N/A

2010 CanWest Record: N/A

2010 CanWest Championship: N/A

2010 CIS Tournament: N/A

Last CanWest Title: N/A

Last CIS Title: N/A

Full Schedule / Roster

The Heat started the season on a bye and haven’t played a league game yet, but are familiar with their Friday night foe in the Pronghorns. The teams matched up in a tournament in Calgary and the Pronghorns came away with a 72-59 victory.

The Heat have a few veteran players that are ready to start their career in Canada West. Roz Huber (Kelowna, BC) a fourth year post will be expected to lead the team on the court and in the locker room, she hopes her team is ready for the leap in leagues and higher level of competition adding, that “overall we’re really excited to be taking that next step.”Coach Heather Semeniuk says “we’re ready for this I think. We’re as ready as we’re going to be right now.”

Third year point guard Ashley Briker (West Kelowna, BC) mentions that the team has come a long way since playing Lethbridge in the preseason, “we started to really click after the first four games.” And expects UBC Okanagan to fare better this time around against the Pronghorns, pointing out that, “we did ok against them [in October when they first played]. It was one of the almost-turning point games with us clicking.”

Head coach Heather Semeniuk agrees with her veterans about Lethbridge. “The biggest thing we recognized [in the first match] is that we can compete with them.”

“We were struggling at the Mount Royal tournament to put four, good, solid quarters in. Often at a [preseason] basketball game you’ll only put in two quarters where you play good offense and defense,” explains Semeniuk about the team early in the year.

Lethbridge struggled to score in their first two games averaging just 54 points a contest and shooting below 40 percent from the field, the three point line and the free throw line. The Pronghorns only have two players averaging over 10 points per game in fifth year Lauren Tall (Guard, Lethbridge, AB) and 6’2″ post Kim Veldman (2nd year, Lethbridge, AB) at 12.5 and 10.5 respectively.

For Saturday’s match the Heat will face a relative unknown in the Calgary Dinos and although unranked, they look to be strong. The Dinos absolutely dismantled the Bobcats winning 85-27 on Saturday and 90-22 on Sunday. The way they won their first two games and the fact that they are hosting the national championship this spring points to the team being strong in the league this year.

Coach Semeniuk says with the turnover on the Calgary roster it is hard to predict how they will be, ” [with] six new faces on the roster. I don’t really know [their] girls well, but we’re going in expecting a lot of pressure from their defense. They like to run, they like the transition game, and we like that too, so we know what that’s about. We’re going to have to be on our toes, ready to move with them. It will be challenging, but we’re good at stepping up to that.”

LETHBRIDGE PRONGHORNS (0-2)

CIS National Ranking: N/A

CanWest Standings: 3rd tied in the east

Last Week: 0-2; Fri 63-57 loss to UW, Sat 61-51 loss to UW

Streak: 2 losses

2010 CanWest Record: 4-20, 11th place

2010 CanWest Championship: NA

2010 CIS Tournament: N/A

Last CanWest Title: 1993

Last CIS Title: N/A

Full Schedule / Roster

Some more info from CanadaWest.org:

LETHBRIDGE PRONGHORNS

Key additions: Deanna Dotts (P), Natalie Nichols (G), Ali Cameron (G), Katlyn Olsen (G)

Key returnees: Lauren Taal (G), Kim Veldman (P), Morgan Cross (F)

Key departures: Becky Heninger (G), Kenzie Sheen-Balderson (P), Hannah Blanchette (F)

LETHBRIDGE, AB – With only five players returning from the 2010-11 roster, this year’s version of the Lethbridge Pronghorns will have a distinctly new look and will strive to return to the post-season mix.

Senior guard Lauren Taal returns for her final season after missing the second half of last season due to injury. In 13 games last season, Taal averaged just over 10 points per game but will need to return to her form from two seasons ago where she finished among the top 10 scorers in the conference.

Two other returning veterans are two six-foot players Stephanie Inman and Morgan Cross, entering their fourth year. Both have developed their games to be a threat inside and outside. They will both be looked to for rebounding, inside finishes and perimeter shooting. Six-foot-two post Kim Veldman returns for her second season and has a great inside game.

The ‘Horns have added a group of college transfers in the additions of Natalie Nichols, Deanna Dotts, Katlyn Olsen, Ali Cameron and Jami Wiebe. All of them bring something different to the team. Ali Cameron and Jami Wiebe will be playing the wing position and be looked upon for their shooting touch and ability to find a path to the rim.

http://www.gohorns.ca/

CALGARY DINOS (2-0)

CIS National Ranking: N/A

CanWest Standings: 1st tied in the east

Last Week: 2-0; Fri 85-27 win over BU, Sat 90-22 win over BU

Streak: 2 wins

2010 CanWest Record: 10-14 (8th)

2010 CanWest Championship: N/A

2010 CIS Tournament: N/A

Last CanWest Title: 2001

Last CIS Title: 1989

Full Schedule / Roster

Some more info from CanadaWest.org:

CALGARY DINOS

Key additions: Jenna Kaye, Jessica Franz, Ashley Hirons

Key returnees: Megan Lang, Tamara Jarrett

Key departure: Ashley Hill

CALGARY – With an entire season to prepare for three home games in mid-March, the new-look University of Calgary Dinos enter the 2011-12 season as a largely unknown commodity in Canada West.

Hosts of the 2012 CIS Women’s Basketball Final 8 from March 17-19 in the Jack Simpson Gym, the Dinos are guaranteed an appearance at the national tournament, and 18-year head coach Shawnee Harle has added a solid crop of recruits that should make the Dinos competitive come playoff time.

Leading the way are former All-Canadian Jenna Kaye and last year’s BC college player of the year Jessica Franz. Kaye, a law student who transferred to Calgary after stints with UPEI and Dalhousie, was a second-team All-Canadian in 2008 and a two-time AUS all-star, while Franz averaged better than 23 points per game with Capilano University last season. They’re joined by Aussie Ashley Hirons, a Melbourne native who is a solid outside shooter and an outstanding student.

That threesome joins a veteran group of returnees including fifth-year guard Megan Lang, forward Alex Cole, and guard Tamara Jarrett. The squad lost the services of Ashley Hill, the school’s third all-time leading scorer, to graduation.

http://www.godinos.com/

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